One of the causes of the 1965 Watts Riots has been identified as a lack of access to health care in South Central, a predominantly African American neighborhood. However, 50 years after the riots, striking health inequalities among ethnic groups still exist in Los Angeles. According to a report by the Social Science Research Council, Los Angeles is the most unequal metropolitan area in all of California in terms of life expectancies, incomes, and educational achievements. For example, the life expectancy for Asian American babies born in Los Angeles is 11.3 years higher than their African American counterparts. Additionally, areas such as Huntington Park, Walnut Park, and South Central, which have significant Hispanic/Latino or African American populations, have health levels comparable to or below the average for the United States in 1970. Speakers for this panel will discuss the predominant health issues that impact the Greater Los Angeles Area, including the neighborhoods surrounding USC, and explore ethical obligations health policy makers and individual health care providers have to address significant disparities. Improvements in health outcomes that have been made since the Watts Riots will also be discussed.
Erin Quinn, Associate Dean for Science and Health, USC Dornsife; Associate Dean of Admissions Emeritus; and Adjunct Associate Professor of Family Medicine, Keck School of Medicine
Robert Tranquada, Emeritus Professor of Medicine and Public Policy
Nic John Ramos, PhD Student, American Studies and Ethnicity, USC Dornsife
Stephen Bero, PhD Student, Philosophy, USC Dornsife
ZYGO is a joint program of the Sidney Harman Academy for Polymathic Study and the Levan Institute for Humanities and Ethics. The series is organized by USC students in health and medicine who seek dialogue with USC faculty across disciplines in order to increase the integration of ethical themes into their curriculum.